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According to figures released by the Abu Dhabi Urban Planning Council (UPC), the total floor area of developments given the green light more than tripled in the second quarter of the year. The UPC announced that 26 projects, spanning a total gross floor area (GFA) of more than 2.32 million sqm, were approved, compared with 708,999 sq m in the previous quarter. The number of projects given the go-ahead was up by just under 25 per cent from the 21 approved in the first quarter.
On the Island
On Abu Dhabi Island, a mixed-use tower development in a prime location facing the Abu Dhabi Corniche was approved. The development has been designed with a distinctly lower five-storey podium that has three 24-storey towers emerging over it. The irregular L-shaped profile of the plot has enabled the three towers to be positioned diagonally so as to achieve maximum views of the Corniche from the highend residential apartments in three towers from levels two to 24. Four basement levels and two podium levels will provide parking, and the site is flanked by roads on two sides, which provide valuable frontage for retail and commercial establishments.
Also on Abu Dhabi Island, two residential tower projects were given the goahead. The first will have a GFA of 10,406 sq m over 24 storeys on a plot of 1,098 sq m, while the second tower - similar in design to the first - will have a GFA of 12,508 sq m over 24 storeys on a plot size of 1,354 sq m. It's designed as a tower block rising from the surrounding environmental deck located on the fifth podium roof, enabling the apartment blocks to be elevated for better views. Facade glazing has been reduced carefully to provide the living rooms and bedrooms with plenty of natural light, and balconies projecting from the building act as solar shading. Parking will be located in the basement and in the podiums.
On the Corniche close to the Corniche Hospital, the 49-storey Saraya residential tower, with three basement floors for underground parking, was also approved.
On the mainland
On the Abu Dhabi mainland, the Burjeel Medical City project in Mohammad Bin Zayed City, a 300-bed speciality hospital covering a GFA of almost 82,000 sq m, was approved. The development consists of a main hospital with four towers, a basement floor and a rooftop with a helipad to provide helicopter access for urgent cases. Also on the mainland, the Abu Dhabi University will see an expansion of the existing female student accommodation building. The ground ftoor will offer service rooms, a reading room, gym, TV room (attached to the multipurpose hall), central laundry and nine studio units. Four floors will house 21 residences in addition to a common kitchen, discussion room, service rooms and storeroom. Once complete, the expansion will provide 93 additional units for female students in the university.
In other areas
In AI Ain, the Remah Emirati Housing Stage 2 residential project, consisting of ten villas and a mosque, was approved. The development has a total GFA of 5,350 sq m and a maximum height of ten metres (two storeys).
In the Mirfa area of AI Gharbia, a mixed-use project comprising 186 residential and commercial units was approved. It includes 192 carpark spaces and a welldesigned courtyard for residents, and covers a total GFA of around 15,253 sq m.
In parallel, the UPC announced the number of Estidama Pearl Ratings that have been awarded in the second quarter. The figures show that 1,017 villas and 22 buildings have been awarded two Pearls, and 41 buildings have been awarded one Pearl, making the total number of ratings for second quarter 1,080. In addition, nine Estidama training sessions have been held with 567 trainees in attendance.
To date, the UPC's Urban Development has delivered 440 projects and master plans with a total GFA of 73.6 million sq m. Since the Estidama Pearl Rating System was launched four years ago, the team has reviewed many projects and a total of 11,878 villas and 1,004 buildings have been awarded Pearl ratings.
Source: Property Weekly